Saturday, April 20

Strong Bitterly Cold Winds Knocking Down Trees, Causing Power Outages


A worker with NC DOT places cones out on Central Falls Rd near Old Liberty Rd due to power lines in the roadway from a fallen tree (Scott Pelkey / Acme News)

ASHEBORO N.C. – Wind gusts of near 30 mph this morning are downing trees and have dropped the wind chill value to the mid-teens just as power outages start to stack up, and its probably going to get worse as the day goes on.

Forecasters are expecting frequent wind gusts of 30 to 40 mph through this evening with a surge of gusts of 40 to 50 mph and isolated gusts of around 55 mph, between 6 AM and 10 AM. These strong winds combined with the bitter arctic air are posing a threat of any remaining moisture refreezing.

“As temperatures rapidly plunge into the 20s today, areas of runoff and lingering moisture could freeze resulting in a few icy spots,” say forecasters with the National Weather Service (NWS) office in Raleigh. “The greatest threat will be in shaded areas and where runoff collects.”

As of 10am this morning Randolph County 911 has dispatched first responders to around a dozen trees across powerlines and in the roadway. The NC Department of Public Safety is reporting just over six hundred customers without power throughout the state, with that number expected to rise.

Very cold temperatures combined with high winds will result in dangerous wind chill values below
zero this evening through Saturday morning. The NWS Office in Raleigh says

Officials say it is important to make sure pets or livestock have adequate shelter from the wind and cold and access to drinking water that will not freeze. With the chance for power outages due to strong wind gusts today it’s important to have a plan to stay warm and know how to safely use a gas-powered heater and/or generator.

We will continue to update this article with new information as the day progresses. Keep an eye on this page or on social media for notifications when an update is posted.

Live Road Closures

Keep track of road closures and incidents across Randolph County today on our Road Closures / Incidents page which is continually updated from the NC Dept of Transportation’s Traffic Information System.